What are the large and small acts of resistance that have brought us to today?

How can librarians and archivists help people make  more meaningful connections between past and present acts of resistance?

What previously untold stories of resistance should be preserved, shared, and told?

Who is important to Philadelphia’s resistance history? Who is creating a history of resistance right now? How will future generations know about them?


To begin answering these questions, we’re holding a series of community listening sessions. 

At these events, our project director and an archivist will be facilitating discussions between activists, archivists, and the general public about resistance, archives, and their existing and possible impact on one another. We expect a portion of the listening sessions to consist of audience members sharing their own experiences (positive or otherwise) with institutional archives and asking questions about the process of preserving their papers. All listening sessions are FREE and open to the public. If you’re interested in having us host a listening session for your organization, please fill out our contact form and send us a message.

Upcoming Listening Sessions:

  • Saturday, February 16, 4:30 pm Parkway Central Library, in conjunction with exhibits, Philadelphia: The Changing City and At the Crossroads: The Legacies of Frederick Douglass and W.E.B. Du Bois. Registration recommended.
  • Wednesday, March 6, 5:00 pm Haverford Branch, Free Library of Philadelphia Discussion follows a screening of Sisters in Freedom, the story of pioneering black and white women in the 1830s who defy social, economic, and cultural norms to come together to agitate against slavery, white supremacy, and inequality of race and gender. The documentary was produced by Philadelphia’s History Making Productions.
  • Wednesday, March 6, 6:00 pm Lucien E. Blackwell West Philadelphia Regional Library, One Book One Philadelphia event explores themes of Black masculinity in art & media through the lens of Jesmyn Ward’s “Sing, Unburied, Sing.” Listening session, discussion, hands-on activities, and opportunities to connect with local resources on transformative storytelling. See The Free Library’s event page here.
  • Wednesday, March 13, Time TBA, Community Archives Forum at William Way LGBT Center
  • Tuesday, March 19, 4:00 pm Paschalville Branch, Free Library of Philadelphia Discussion follows a screening of Sisters in Freedom

And save the date for our closing event, Tuesday, May 7, 2019!

Previous Listening Sessions: 

Friday, Feb. 8, 7:00 pm, was canceled due to technical difficulties with the screening.

Thursday, Jan. 31, 5-7:30 pm, “Remembering Resistance, Chronicling Community” (Read a recap of the session on our blog.)

Wednesday, December 12, 6-8 pm, “Uncovering Women of Color in Time, Place, and History” (Read a recap of the session on our blog.)

Wednesday, November 28, 6-8 pm “Archiving Our Own” (Read a recap of the session on our blog.)

Get Involved

Resistance takes shape in many different ways—in large, small, and everyday acts, and through people whose names we know and some people whose names we don’t know. We’d love to know more about your resistance story and how libraries and archives could be a partner in it. Your answers will help us figure out what’s next for Chronicling Resistance. Can you help us by answering the questions below?

If you’d like to have us host a listening session with your organization, please fill out our contact form and send us a message.

If you’re a PACSCL member organization looking for ways to spread the resistance narratives in your collections,  tell us more here.